Under pressure - What to do when your child is spurting blood

No matter what, apply pressure if there is blood splurting out from anywhere.

Yesterday I was upstairs working while my middle daughter was downstairs taking on one of her new chores. She was emptying the dishwasher like a good little girl, working hard for her allowance when all of a sudden I heard a blood curdling scream. I flew down the stairs to see both of my daughter's hands, as well as my kitchen covered in blood. Apparently a glass had broken on the counter while she had her two little hands wrapped around it and it sliced her hand wide open.

I tried to rinse her hands to see how bad the wound was, but it just wouldn't stop bleeding. It was like some horrible horror movie except instead of Elm Street it was a Nightmare in the Linevsky Kitchen. I was home alone in the middle of a CSI crime scene and didn't know what to do. I thought about applying pressure to the wound like I've seen them do on ER, but was worried there was glass lodged in my baby's hands and I didn't want to make it worse. I then called 911 and the paramedics swiftly arrived.

They wrapped her hands in gauze until she faintly resembled the Return of the Mummy, and the paramedics informed me that it's better to apply pressure to the wound, whether it's a knife or glass stuck in there, it can always be surgically removed. Good to know. Another medical error I made was wrapping her hands in towel paper. Concerned with finding something sterile, I was told that a dishtowel would have been better because it was heavier and would have added more pressure.


Then we trekked to the urgent care center and she had to receive seven stitches in one hand. A quick phone call assured me they had ample experience in giving stitches and the woman who helped us at the ER (an 18 year registered trauma nurse at Jackson) informed us that after treating 600 child patients, she never had to hold one down while giving them stitches. I soon realized why. She showed us her entire bag of medical tricks and walked my daughter and I through step by step, explaining what everything was and what it was for. Phenomenal.

What a brave girl I have. She's tough. They didn't even give her a shot of novocaine. They applied a topical ointment to numb the area and once the stitching began she winced a few times, but still turned down the novocaine. She doesn't have a black belt in karate for nothing. She grinned and beared it like Chuck Norris with a bullet wound in the abdomen. I wonder where her incredible strength comes from, I fainted once in college while trying to put in contact lenses.

Her hands are healing and overall she's okay, but the bad news is - she can't play volleyball, swim or battle evil foes at fencing for two whole weeks. The good news? The ER physician told her she never had to do dishes again.

Obviously he's never been to the Linevsky Kitchen.

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